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Final Poll Business for 2009

OTP was proud as could be to be a part of two of the blogosphere’s most respected collection of bloggers… the CBS Sports Blogpoll and the SEC Power Poll hosted by TeamSpeadKills. Each week this season we’ve compiled our lists, tried to rationalize who we thought best, and rank accordingly. It was often a collaborative sort of effort with our readers, and more often than not, something that we as a site were proud of. There were weeks where the logic used may have been flawed, certain results and outcomes weighted more heavily than others, and playing the dangerous game of comparing two teams with no common opponents, substandard results, and a boatload of expectations. All in all, though, it was an exciting way to keep tabs on 2009, and OTP is honored to be included in both of those things. Here’s our final ballots, along with a small smattering of explanation…

This week’s Blogpoll was certainly easy to start, but after the preordained #1, it got screwy. I guess that’s a metaphor of sorts for this particular season in general. Alabama is clearly The Team, and I do find it funny that TCU, the team many were clamoring for to play Alabama in the BCS Championship was drilled by Boise State. Respectable loss? Of course. Justifying the BCS for not including them? A little… yeah.

Florida moves to #2 for us, though Boise State does make a case, being undefeated and all, but when a team is the SEC runner up, whose only loss came to the eventual national title winner, and defeated one of those pesky undefeateds in their own Bowl, that to me, warrants that sort of lofty ranking. Boise State slides up, and perhaps strange in some eyes, Texas stays where they are. The Longhorns’ performance against the Crimson Tide was admirable to say the least, and borders on impressive considering their Heisman contender sat out the majority of the game. Ohio State rounds out our top 5, thanks largely to their victory over Oregon in the Rose Bowl.

Towards the bottom of the poll, it truly is anyone’s guess, as certain teams like Clemson probably could have jumped in and did so on a number of fellow participants’ ballots. Unfortunately for us, having watched Kentucky play all year, beating the Cats isn’t enough to stake a trip to the Top 25.

Finally, we were asked to submit our final SEC Power Poll for the 2009 season. This one was easy in one sense, exceptionally challenging in the other. At the top, it’s easy to pick 1-2-3-4. At the bottom, it’s easy to pick 12. 5-11 though is a total guessing game. Is Georgia better than Kentucky? Probably. Did Kentucky beat Georgia? Yep. So do you discount season long results or do you discount head to head competition? Exactly.

This is what we came up with:

  1. Alabama: National champs, SEC champs, pretty self explanatory.
  2. Florida: A better game by Tebow in Atlanta and the Gators may have been our #1 after they beat Texas.
  3. Ole Miss: Disappointing when compared to this season’s gigantic hype wagon that rolled in, but the Rebels peaked at the end with another Cotton Bowl victory.
  4. LSU: In the top tier but barely holding on. Confusing losses, some lackluster performances, and significant underperformances at times this season.
  5. Georgia: One of those middle of the pack teams that are just as good (or bad) as those in the same boat.
  6. Tennessee: See Georgia.
  7. Arkansas: See Georgia/Tennessee.
  8. Auburn: See Georgia/Tennessee/Arkansas.
  9. South Carolina: See Georgia/Tennessee/Arkanasas/Auburn.
  10. Kentucky: Probably indistinguishable from Mississippi State below them, and the Cats did lose to MSU. That’s logical, rational, and totally not needed here.
  11. Mississippi State: Better than Vandy.
  12. Vandy: Definitely the worst team in the SEC this season, arguably one of the worst in recent memory. The fact that 2009 is finally over is literally the only thing to celebrate for Dores fans.

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